Thinking Out Loud Thursday: Speedwork, Fall & Another Race

thinking out loud

So I’m linking up today with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud Thursday.

Here’s what I’m thinking today…

  • Can I really get faster?

I’ll be honest, the only time, I sprint is if I am running through the finish line …. until this past Monday.

Last year, I joined the Turkey Trot Training group and the Freihofer’s Training group.  I ran with the group on Mondays.  But I never really did the drills correctly.  I ran with my friends and we chatted.  Most of the time, I was in the midst of training for a long race so speed work was not a good idea the day after a long run or the day after a half marathon. And when there is a large group of people, it’s easy to get lost in the crowd.  I do, however, think that running up the hills made me stronger last fall and even faster.

This fall, we just switched locations and there are no hills.  And on Monday, only 3 people showed up from my group.  Oh no!!

Our coach, Patrick’s plan was for a warm up and then 4 minutes fast, 2 minute jog, repeated 4 times followed by a cool down (4 miles total)

There was no room to hide.  But I tried.

The first 4 minutes, I ran kinda fast and was in the middle of the 3 runners. Patrick was running with the fastest runner.

The 2nd 4 minutes, I was slowing down and Patrick noticed. Oh shit!

He lectured me and told that I wasn’t even breathing hard and that I could do better. Of course, I complained that I was old & tired but he was hearing nothing of it.  We compromised and I said I would sprint for the last minute of the 4 minutes. And I did. I ran so fast that I thought I would puke (and 1 minute can sometimes seem like forever.)

Well, Patrick was impressed but that meant that he expected me to do it again.  And I did and I didn’t die.

He said that I was strong and could get faster if I put in the effort.

Probably true.

Would I do this if I were running alone? Probably not!

Will I run like this when the other runners show up next week? We’ll see.

Am I the only one who doesn’t do speed drills & just runs for fun??? (I guess that’s why coaches are important.)


  • Fall has been awesome.

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE summer!! But they said that because we had such as dry summer, the fall foliage would be disappointing.

They were wrong.



I’m not complaining but it’s been warm enough to wear skirts to run!!


This is how I dressed today…


72 degrees on November 5th.

The thing I don’t like is that now it gets dark so early!!! I have to find new places to run (with lights.)



  • Guess what? I have a race this weekend.  No surprise.  It’s a 15k so it even fits right in with my half marathon training.


This is my fourth time running this 15k race. It is the 40th anniversary of one of the oldest 15ks in the country and Frank Shorter will be there running it. So I am pretty excited. (It’s not NYC but cool for upstate NYS.)

My first time running this race was in 2011. I was injured in 2012 and didn’t run it.  I ran it in 2013 and was disappointed with my finish time.


my fake happy face

Last year, they changed the course.  It started and ended in downtown Schenectady rather than in Central Park.

Well, I loved the new course and finished the race with a new PR!!

However, this year, I have been either training for my half marathon in October or the upcoming one in December. My long runs have been slooooow! I don’t even feel ready to run 9.3 hilly miles but I need to be since I’ll be running 13.1 in 3 weeks!!!!

So I do not expect a PR but I just want a decent long run (and not get INJURED!!)

Race Goals:

A: Finish under 1:35 (my PR is 133:23)
B: All miles between 9 and 11 minutes.
C: Finish happy and healthy.

Happy Running! What are thinking about today?


8 thoughts on “Thinking Out Loud Thursday: Speedwork, Fall & Another Race

  1. I had no idea Frank Shorter would be there! I have my visor that I get people to sign, except that it’s going to be too cold for a visor. Would it look weird if I wore a visor over a beanie? Crossing my fingers that Chester can stay healthy and I can actually make it.

    I keep telling you you’re fast, so I’m not at all surprised. I guess it really depends on how badly you want to work for it.

    I’ll be happy with anything within the 2 hr range. Not quite sure I’m ready for it either.

    My biggest goal is to not go out too fast. And I looked at the course map and there’s only 3 water stops? Ugh, now I’m considering bringing a small water bottle. Which I really don’t want to do.


  2. It’s a challenge to know what to wear. It was cold last year too and I wore just a skirt & a long sleeve top with a baseball cap. I was only cold at the beginning and the end. I have started wearing my cotton long sleeve race shirts as throwaways – a good way to stay warm and get rid of them.

    See you on Sunday!


  3. Amen on the decent run and not get injured! Run your pace, I’m a firm believer in if you go your pace you’ll do fine. You are like me got lots of races ahead, I just want to be able to do them. Even if that means missing PR’s. Good luck to you, Oh an gosh I’m so jealous of your Fall pictures, they are so beautiful!!!!


  4. I love the Fall too- and the running just seems better- I don’t know if it’s the air or what, but I love it too- I will have to look into the Stockade Race- It looks fun and isn’t too far. Good luck in your upcoming race!


  5. I don’t train for speed but I know I should. One summer we went on vacation with my BIL who runs faster than I do and I had to run fast to keep up. I came back from that vacation and had a great PR. So I am convinced it works, I just don’t do it. But I know I should. But like you, I usually run by myself and don’t have someone to push me…


  6. Good luck on your race this weekend, Darlene! And I can very much relate to getting into a comfort zone with running and not pushing yourself harder. That’s kind of where I’m at right now, and I’ve actually been looking for ways to get out of it and push myself a little bit harder.


  7. You made me LOL about your speedwork session and the coach. I think Patrick is right and if you train with the group, you will get faster. Speedwork sessions seem to be harder for older runners, but I always feel accomplished after working hard with my group,. You are ready for this race and keep strong those last few miles. I want to read your recap next week that you earned a shiny new PR! Good luck and have fun!


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